Tuesday, May 19, 2015 – Memorial Day and More Stories from The Greatest Generation
1915 – The 100the anniversary of the start of World War I. (The triggering event (no pun intended) took place the previous year, but actual declarations and opening shots began in 1915).
1945 – May 16 – VE – Day – The 70th anniversary of the end of World War II
1975 – April 30 – The 40th anniversary of the fall of Saigon.
Between today and Friday I will be posting some Memorial Day posts about some heroes from The Greatest Generation and My Generation.
You met Lt. Colonel Tom Matthews, Fighting Texas Aggie Class of ’51 on May 12. Dr. Matthew is on the left. Today, please met Mr. Ray Halliburton. And yes, Mr. Halliburton is a relative of those Halliburtons (Google them). Mr. Ray is in the middle. Tomorrow you will meet the man on the right.
Mr. Ray still lives in Lulling, Texas, but I understand his health is deteriorating rapidly. He, like all of the other WWII vets, speak to the urgency to get WWII Vets to see the THEIR Memorial through Honor Flights. Here are some photos with a bit of Mr. Ray’s history.
He served in General George Patton’s Third Army in the Battle of the Bulge. He was 19 years old. In December 1944 in the Ardennes the Third Army frustrated the German counteroffensive as it swept into Germany and into Czechoslovakia. Mr. Halliburton was taken prison in Germany and spent the remainder of the war in a POW camp.
He returned to Lulling where he farmed and raised a family. He had never been to Washington D.C. until the Honor Flight. I love the expression on his face.
Mr. Ray with U.S. Senator John Coryn from Texas. However, everyone who saw the second photo said, “Now that is more like what Mr. Ray would be doing. Telling the Senator what he thinks about things.” Notice Senator Coryn seems to be taking in all in.
Here he is with Robyn, his escort at the Iwo Jima statue. For you Marines out there, he said “Never would have made it without the Marines.”
Students and teachers (and everybody else who saw the veterans) swarmed them like rock stars. Here is Ray and another veteran answering questions.
Tomorrow you will meet the soldier I had the honor of being with on the Honor Flight.
Remember, these and all the other brave individuals are why we celebrate Memorial Day.